Where’s Darwin When You Need Him?

September 15, 2009 at 7:21 am (Uncategorized)

I’m sitting in a Max Brenner Chocolate Shop near IVF Australia downtown. We had a follow-up appointment, and boy, don’t they see you coming. Over $130 bucks for a very brief chat, only $30 of which is rebatable by Medicare, and not one bean of which is rebatable using the private health insurance we’ve been paying for years. It’s incredible but true. I’m no longer sure just what it is covered, only that we keep being told no refund whatsoever is due.

Enough about the money. Who wants to go to Shanghai anyway? No, I’d much rather spend the holiday fund sitting in the waiting room at IVF Australia flipping through old magazines wondering if I have a single viable egg to my name. Well, I guess next time the question making my palms sweat will be different, because that one was answered today, and without further ado, I am happy and relieved to say that yes, it seems I still have eggs in the basket. Apparently my AMH (AMH? Anyone? Is that right?) results even have the good grace to be superior in my age group.  Phew. It hadn’t occurred to me it was possible to exceed the average – I was just hoping not to bomb out completely. Basically, the blood test I took last time indicates something about egg quantity, and that in turn indicates something about egg quality – there seems to be a direct correlation between number of eggs and viability of eggs, and therefore they can deduce something about my chances of having good eggs from this one vial of blood.

The doctor was very pleased with my score. I waited in vain for a merit certificate or a high five or a Pina Colada with a paper umbrella, but frankly the relief was reward enough. I have been making myself a little sick with worry since they took my blood several weeks ago. It’s been a case of pretending not to have a care in the world but knowing perfectly well all the while that this one particular anxiety was there offstage shouting obscenities at me from behind the curtain. Now I can have it removed by security. Get out! Be gone! You’re not welcome here! Don’t come back!

It’s not so crazy that I was concerned – there have been plenty of unexpected twists and turns in this little psycho-drama so far. And when we first sat down with Dr P, he happily informed Llew that he has Super Sperm, while in the same breath expounding his theory that people with B negative blood (ie. me) are directly descended from Neanderthals.

I’ll give you a moment.

Yes, Neanderthals. My jaw dropped, but Dr P didn’t notice. He was enjoying the live audience for his theory too much to pause. It goes like this. The highest incidence of B negative blood on the planet is found in the Basque region of Spain. Neanderthals died out in this same location. Ergo, modern day B negative Homo Sapiens are descended from Captain Caaaaavemaaaaan. It’s a beautiful theory. I bet you can see why I’d rather hang out with Dr P than go to China. As options go, they’re neck and neck, or sloping forehead and sloping forehead.

As you can imagine, Llew’s eyes lit up as Dr Jekyll laid out this pearler for his paying (and paying and paying) audience.

“You know how I told you everything would be fine because, as far as I’m concerned, you’re the height of humanity?” he whispered while Dr P swotted imaginary flies and giggled to himself. “Well, forget that.  I was wrong. This is much better. I’m going with that whole ‘I married a Neanderthal’ theory.”

I smiled weakly, rummaging for the credit card. But that was last time. For today, I’m just going to enjoy the idea that Mother Hubbard’s cupboard is not yet bare. I think that’s a win. Survival of the fittest? I’ll take ’em, I’ll take ’em all!



  1. Llew J said,

    Well now I feel guilty, 253 drinks and not a brolly amongst them. Sub-standard-super-sperm-spouse.

  2. Grad said,

    The two of you are so adorable (I know, I know. I have a tendency to get sappy); but, you really are. Charlie Darwin would be very happy to know that the line has continued on, and will continue to continue. Since I’m B neg, however, I wonder what the reverse of the cave man is? Maybe space man?

  3. Charlotte said,

    Nice one. I AM pleased to hear of this. Go Eggsy and Superman. xc

  4. Pete said,

    This post totally made my day (it’s been that kind of day). Sloping forehead to sloping forehead – ah, brilliant! If you’re neanderthal then they rock, egg lady. Ok that sounded a bit weird. It was ok when Charlotte was calling Llew superman but anyway. Congrats on the superior eggs. And that Dr P needs a rock to the forehead. (BTW, and this is the wine talking, I realised today that if P does mysteriously and magically get pregnant then my parents are going to be levelling that shotgun at their own son so persistently that it’s not funny. But this is your blog so apologies and I’ll withdraw now.)

  5. Lilian Nattel said,

    I’m so glad to hear that your basket is full of grade A+. 🙂

  6. Lilian Nattel said,

    And of course–Supersperm on the other side. Can you get itsy bitsy capes?

  7. kate4samh said,

    Maybe helping create life makes one full of oneself? If Pete has the rock I’ll bring the slingshot. But you are so right Di, this is a good news story, and I am so very pleased for you.

  8. doctordi said,

    Thanks, all! And Grad, so good to know we’re blood brethren!

  9. woo said,

    I think I’m in love with Dr P.

    I’ve ALWAYS been fascinated with what happened to the neanderthals and I am now desperate to find out if I have B Negative type blood. 😉

    Good luck with the fertility treatment; jolly good news about the eggs and sperm situation!

  10. Simonne said,

    Totally hilarious! Thank God I’m A+! And congrats on those youthful eggs 🙂

  11. litlove said,

    You go, cave girl. 🙂

  12. Tim said,

    Hi Di,

    I hope your doc knows more about medicine than he does about evolution… Neanderthals are our cousins, not our mums and dads. I think he might have been joking just to freak you out. Maybe you can ask him about his theories on leech therapy & chakras next time.

    Oh well. That just makes me sound like a grumpy spoilsport. Which I am.

  13. Tim said,

    But that is good news, all the same!

  14. doctordi said,

    Thanks, guys!

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